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Medicos take out protest march

india Updated: Aug 24, 2006 01:32 IST

HUNDREDS OF students of the GSVM Medical College came out of their classes in protest against the approval of the proposed OBC Quota Bill by the Union Cabinet for placing it before Parliament in the Monsoon session. While the IITians associated with Youth for Equality (Y4E) have decided to go on a hunger strike amid prospects of a crack down by the institute.

Agitated medicos blocked the Medical College crossing for about half-an-hour and took out a procession carrying placards. They also raised anti-reservation slogans to express their anguish over the Bill. As a mark of protest, the students even tied black bands. College principal Dr SK Katiyar appealed the students not to take part in the agitation.

Meanwhile, students of the IIT-K have also begun their 24-hour hunger strike outside the administrative building from 4 pm today in protest against the Quota Bill. The students could not get permission from the IIT authorities for observing the hunger strike.

According to the state representative of Youth For Equality (Y4E) Chandra Shekhar, students have appealed to the faculty members for extending support to their protest against inequality in the OBC Bill.

Students have also appealed to the faculty members to go on mass leave on Thursday and asked the students to boycott their classes on the day.

The hunger strike decision was taken at an emergency meeting of the students on Tuesday night. The students even tried to take permission from the authorities for the agitation plan inside the campus but they could not get it.

Since, Director Dr Sanjay G Dhande was out of station, they met acting director and the Dean of Students’ Affairs (DoSA) Dr Prawal Sinha, who reportedly expressed his inability to grant permission. He said only the Director of the institute was competent to give permission for any such agitation in and outside the campus. He advised them to contact Deputy Director of the Institute, Prof Kripa Shanker.

However, according to Chandra Shekhar they sent an e-mail to the Deputy Director informing him about their plan of hunger strike and also informed the DoSA about it.

Members of the Y4E though maintained that though the faculty members had assured to go on mass leave on Thursday, a large number of them refused to go on leave.

The IIT-K administrative office sources said that they had not received any such applications till late noon.

A senior professor told Hindustan Times that as per the rules of the Institute no permission could be given to any group or association for any agitational activity of any form. The students would have to face the consequences for violating the rules, the professor said.

While the GSVM teachers refrained themselves from taking part in the strike, the IIT-K teachers supported the agitation.

Three faculty members Dr HC Varma, Prof A Ghatak and Prof S Umesh came out openly in support of the Y4E and participated in the strike.